The Barnes and Noble board of directors has approved the spin off of their college bookstore and educational branch from the main company. The official date this will occur is on August 2nd 2015.
Barnes and Noble operates their educational unit at 714 campuses in the U.S. and posted a sales decline of 0.9 percent to $1.75 billion during the fiscal year ended in May. It accounted for about 27% of total revenue, which is very appealing for investors looking to buy into this new company.
One of the biggest advantages the college division has over the retail stores is that it doesn’t hold leases, so it has fewer costs. The unit instead signs multiyear contracts to run stores for the schools.
John Tinker, an analyst at Maxim Group, said the new structure makes sense. “What this does is create a pure play for investors interested in the college market,” said Mr. Tinker. “Keeping the Nook inside the retail group is logical because they don’t currently know where it stands. Nook losses are shrinking, but it is still uncertain what’s really happening there.”
Spin-Off of Barnes & Noble Education, Inc.
The Barnes & Noble board of directors (the “Board”) has approved the final distribution ratio and declared a pro rata dividend of the outstanding shares of BNED common stock, which will result in the complete legal and structural separation of the two companies. The distribution is subject to the satisfaction or waiver of certain conditions as set forth in BNED’s Registration Statement on Form S-1 (the “Prospectus”).
On the distribution date of August 2, 2015, Barnes & Noble stockholders of record as of 5:00 p.m. on July 27, 2015, the record date for the distribution, will receive 0.632 shares of BNED common stock for each share of Barnes & Noble common stock they hold on the record date.
No action or payment is required by Barnes & Noble stockholders to receive the shares of BNED common stock. Stockholders who hold Barnes & Noble common stock on the record date will receive a book-entry account statement reflecting their ownership of BNED common stock or their brokerage account will be credited with the BNED shares. The Prospectus, which contains details regarding the distribution of the BNED common stock and BNED’s business and management following the BNED spin-off, is being mailed to Barnes & Noble stockholders.
For U.S. federal income tax purposes, Barnes & Noble’s U.S. stockholders (other than those subject to special rules) generally will not recognize gain or loss as a result of the distribution of BNED shares. Barnes & Noble stockholders are urged to consult with their tax advisors with respect to the U.S. federal, state and local or foreign tax consequences, as applicable, of the BNED spin-off.
Shares of Barnes & Noble common stock will continue to trade “regular way” on the New York Stock Exchange (“NYSE”) under the symbol “BKS” through the distribution date of August 2, 2015, and thereafter. Investors are encouraged to consult with their financial advisors regarding the specific implications of buying or selling Barnes & Noble common stock on or before the distribution date.
BNED common stock is expected to begin trading on a “when-issued” basis on the NYSE under the symbol “BNED WI” beginning on July 23, 2015. On August 3, 2015, when-issued trading of BNED common stock will end and “regular-way” trading under the symbol “BNED” will begin. The CUSIP number for the BNED common stock will be 06777U 101 when regular way trading begins.
Contemporaneously with the approval of the spin-off, the Board also approved a policy of paying dividends at an annual rate of $0.60 per share of common stock of the Company, payable in four installments of $0.15 per share of common stock of the Company, with such quarterly dividends to be declared on a quarterly basis by the Board. The timing, declaration, amount and payment of any future dividends to stockholders will fall within the discretion of the Board, taking into account such considerations as the Board may deem relevant at the time, including, without limitation, the Company’s financial condition, financial performance, available liquidity, any applicable restrictions under the Company’s credit facilities and applicable legal requirements.
In accordance with the dividend policy, the Board has declared a dividend equal to $0.15 per share of common stock of the Company to the holders of record of the common stock of the Company as of the close of business on August 7, 2015, with such dividend being payable on August 17, 2015.
Michael Kozlowski is the Editor in Chief of Good e-Reader. He has been writing about audiobooks and e-readers for the past ten years. His articles have been picked up by major and local news sources and websites such as the CNET, Engadget, Huffington Post and Verge.